After the Holocaust, many Jewish people who survived made aliyah (immigrated) to Israel. And today, many still live there. Their children and grandchildren have served, or still serve, their biblical and historic homeland. The IDF brings us some of their moving stories:
Jacob (Yankale) Bregman
Jacob was born in Lithuania and was transported with his family to a ghetto at age 10. While many in the ghetto were sent to concentration camps, Jacob’s father received a work permit, which allowed the family to stay in the ghetto. Later, Jacob and his family were sent to Stutthof and then he and his father were sent to Dachau, but were split up there. While in Dachau, he was forced to do hard labor, such as pulling heavy carts. Jacob was on a death march when he awoke to find no Nazis in sight and was liberated. After his liberation, the Joint Distribution Committee placed him in a refugee camp. Soon after, he and his friends looked for their families. Jacob found his father while traveling down a road. His entire family survived with the exception of his brother, cousins, and grandparents. Jacob and his family immigrated to Israel where he proudly served in the IDF.
Augustine Krumholtz was born in Galati, Romania where she lived until she was 3-years-old and her family was sent to a concentration camp on the Russian border. Her father was taken and killed at the camp next to hers. After the war, Augustine and her family returned to Romania where she studied until 1951 and then immigrated to Israel. She met her husband in Israel and they had two children together. Augustine is very happy that she lives in Israel with her children and grandchildren.
Moshe Kukliansky was born in Lithuania in 1923 where he and his family suffered many hardships during the Holocaust. They crossed a river bordering Poland, stayed in the ghetto and fled from it, and hid in forests and pits. They first hid in a potato pit and later in "permanent" pits.
Moshe, with determination, coolness, creativity, honesty, intelligence, and extraordinary robustness managed to lead his family and fight to save themselves even when they faced challenges that many people couldn’t cope with. It was his attitude that helped him save himself, as well as, his father, sister, and younger brother from being murdered in the Holocaust. Unfortunately, Moshe’s mother did not make it. The family does not know what happened to her and assume she was murdered during one of the first round ups.